With AIN Media Group's Aviation International News and its predecessor Aviation Convention News celebrating the company's 50th year of continuous publication this year, AIN’s editorial staff is going back through the archives each month to bring readers some interesting events that were covered over the past half-century.
REWIND: (November, 2015) BBA Aviation is betting big on a business aviation resurgence with the September 23 announcement of a $2.065 billion deal to buy Landmark Aviation from The Carlyle Group. This would make its Signature Flight Support subsidiary the world’s largest FBO chain. Included in the deal are Landmark’s 68 FBOs in North America and Europe and its MRO business, as well as its aircraft charter and management division which would give BBA its first involvement in that segment.
FASTFORWARD: The deal was consummated in February 2016 and in one stroke eliminated one of Signature’s two major rivals, while cementing its position as the world’s largest aviation service provider. The transaction added 62 facilities to Signature’s network after it was forced to divest at six locations where Signature already had the only other FBO. That parcel of six FBOs became the nucleus of a resurgent Ross Aviation, which recently merged with Atlantic Aviation to form the industry’s only other mega-FBO chain.
A renamed and streamlined Signature Aviation was itself sold last year to a consortium of private equity firms including Blackstone, Global Infrastructure Partners, and Cascade Investment for $4.7 billion. Today, between its wholly-owned and branded partner locations, Signature counts more than 200 facilities in its worldwide network